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Easy vegetarian chilli recipe

Easy vegetarian chilli recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Diet & lifestyle
  • Vegetarian
  • Vegetarian meals
  • Vegetarian chilli

This quick and easy chilli recipe is a great midweek solution for supper! You can even use it to top jacket potatoes.

124 people made this

IngredientsServes: 8

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 225g (8 oz) soya or Quorn mince
  • 4 (400g) tins kidney beans
  • 1 (400g) tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1L (1 3/4 pints) water
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown soft sugar
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 dessertspoon chilli powder

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:30min ›Ready in:45min

  1. In a large saucepan sauté onion, garlic, celery and olive oil until onions are soft.
  2. Add soya or Quorn mince, kidney beans, tomatoes, water, sugar, salt, pepper and chilli powder. Stir occasionally, let simmer for 30 minutes.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(21)

Reviews in English (22)

by Caroline C

Something else.Excellent Recipe! I put everything in a slow cooker (sauteed garlic, onions & celery first) and left it on low all day until supper. Delish!!-24 Jul 2008

by springschel

Altered ingredient amounts.I halved the recipe, adding about a teaspoon of minced garlic, and adding about two handfuls of TVP, dry. My roommates and family absolutely loved it! I think it's my favourite chilli.-24 Jul 2008


Used different ingredients.This recipe was a great base. I omited the celery. Due to another review, I cut down on the water by 200ml. I wanted my chilli meaty, so I substituted about 500g browned mince for half of the TVP. The result was delicious. I am sure that it would be equally tasty made accoring to the recipe - but I would hold off on part of the water, and see how thick you want it.-24 Jul 2008

  • 175g/6oz green lentils
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1-2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 red and 1 green pepper, stalk and seeds removed, and chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 x 400g/14oz cans chopped tomatoes
  • 1 heaped tbsp tomato purée
  • 300ml/½ pint vegetable stock
  • 100g/4oz frozen peas
  • 175g/6oz mushrooms, wiped and quartered
  • 1 courgette, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained

Place the green lentils in a large bowl and pour boiling water over them. Leave to soak for 30 minutes. (Alternatively, buy a tin of pre soaked lentils.) Drain.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan and fry the onion and garlic together with the chilli and cumin, about ten minutes or until the onions are soft.

Add the peppers, carrots and drained green lentils and cook for five minutes, stirring all the time. Add the tomatoes, purée, stock and peas, bring to the boil and simmer until the lentils are tender (about 30 minutes). Add the mushrooms and courgettes and simmer for five minutes more. Season to taste.

Easy vegetarian chilli recipe - Recipes

Whether you're a longtime vegetarian or you're new to the meat-free club, there are a handful of recipes that every plant-based eater needs on deck. One of those, of course, is a solid vegetarian chili. A hearty bowl of bean chili provides all of the comfort and satisfaction that a meat-based dish does, but it forgoes ground beef or turkey for a hearty blend of filling beans and other classic chili ingredients.

Chili is a no-brainer during the winter. It's warm, filling and provides enough leftovers for the entire week. When the blustery winds and cold weather have you feeling low, chili is the perfect pick-me-up. But that's not all the dish is good for. Chili is packed with protein and flavor and making the dish vegetarian doesn't sacrifice any of its perks. Aside from kidney beans, this recipe also uses black beans and great Northern beans for an extra protein boost.

Perhaps the best part about chili is the minimal clean-up. Just get out one big stock pot and start by sauteing a diced large white onion. Once the onions are translucent, add in the beans, corn, broth, canned tomatoes, garlic and spices to the pot. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to low heat. Cover and let the dish simmer for at least one hour.

Serve the chili with some shredded cheese, scallions, avocado or sour cream. If you're making the dish for Wild Card weekend, serve it with some chips to make it dippable. No matter how you choose to enjoy the three-bean chili, there's no denying that it's one of the best vegetarian dishes to make when you're balling on a budget.

Three Bean Vegetarian Chili


1 large white onion, diced
1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 can red kidney beans, drained
1 can black beans, drained
1 can great Northern beans, drained
1 can corn, drained (or 1 1/2 cups frozen corn)
2 cups vegetable broth
1 28-ounce can canned crushed tomatoes
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 tablespoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon cumin
1 pinch of red chili flakes
Salt and pepper, to taste

In a large Dutch oven, heat vegetable oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until translucent.

Add beans, corn, vegetable broth, canned tomatoes, garlic and spices to the pot.

Kid Friendly Vegetarian Chili

2 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, roughly chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp cocoa powder
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1 tablespoon peanut butter (if you have a nut allergy you can skip this ingredient or substitute with a seed butter)
3 red peppers, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
2 sweet potatoes (total 10 ounces), chopped into 1/2 inch pieces (smaller if you have picky potato eaters, * see the note below)
handful of little yellow potatoes, halved
2 x 19 fl oz cans mixed beans (chick peas, black beans, butter beans)
1 x 28 fl oz can whole plum tomatoes
1 x 28 fl oz can diced plum tomatoes
handful of cilantro stalks
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup sour cream

In a cast iron dutch oven…if you don’t have a dutch oven, a large flat bottomed pot will suffice…heat oil over medium-high heat. Toss in the shallots, cumin, cocoa, paprika and peanut butter. Cook the onions and spices until the onions soften and the peanut butter melts. You will have a dark, onion paste.

Add in the peppers, sweet potatoes and yellow potatoes. Toss the peppers and potatoes in the paste until they are coated.

Add beans (with their liquid), tomatoes (with their liquid), cilantro stalks and salt. Stir until all the ingredients are combined. Bring the chilli to a boil and then drop to a simmer. Simmer for 1-2 hours…until the potatoes are soft.

Serve the chilli with shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream.

Now, what does “kid friendly” mean? I have two kids – one kid devoured the chilli and even took a thermos full for lunch the next day. The other kid picked her way around the sweet potatoes. I’ll take that. She loved the flavours…not the chunky potatoes. Lesson learned, next time I’ll chop the potatoes smaller. If you have a picky potato eater…chop those sweet potatoes smaller. Kid approved!

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • ¾ cup finely chopped white onion
  • ½ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans low-sodium black beans, rinsed
  • 1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup shredded cheese, such as Cheddar or pepper Jack

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, bell pepper and garlic and cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Stir in chili powder, cumin, oregano and coriander cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add beans, tomatoes (with their juice) and water and simmer for 5 minutes.

Serve the chili sprinkled with cheese.

To make ahead: Refrigerate chili (Step 1) for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

1 1/2 starch, 1 1/2 vegetable, 1 1/2 lean meat, 1/2 high-fat meat, 1/2 fat

How To Store, Freeze and Reheat Our Easy Vegetarian Chili Recipe

Since there’s no meat in this vegetarian chili I keep it up to 4 days in the refrigerator. At that point I’d freeze it.

This vegetarian chili freezes better than some others because I don’t have watery vegetables in it like zucchini which can become mushy.

Once the vegetarian chili has completely cooled, use a ladle to scoop it into freezer bags. Depending on the size of your household you’ll want to store in gallon size bags for large portions or quart size bags for individual ones. I always make a couple of smaller individual portions for lunch options or for times when you are the only one home for dinner.

Lay the bags flat in the freezer for optimal storage space. I usually lay the bags flat on a baking tray in the freezer. Once the bags of chili have frozen, then I remove the baking tray. Remember to use a permanent marker to label the bags with contents and date frozen.

See our post on How To Freeze Chilis and Soups for more detailed steps.

Defrost frozen bags of chili in the refrigerator overnight and then reheat in a saucepan or microwave. If you don’t have time to defrost, then pull the bag directly from the freezer. Put it in the microwave for about a minute on high to get the chili to break up.

Then transfer to a pot over low heat.

How To Make The Best Vegan Chili Ever!

Making the best vegan chili recipe is so quick and easy! When Denise showed me how, I was shocked at how fast it was done and how fast the flavors came together.

First you are going to take a medium-sized pot and turn the stove to medium heat.

Then, you are going to add the vegan meat crumbles to the pan and stir for a couple seconds until they are warm.

I use Gardein brand frozen fake “beef” crumbles and it is pretty much the best thing ever, but any vegan beef crumbles work wonderfully for this recipe!

You are then going to add the can of crushed tomatoes, INCLUDING THE WATER! You do NOT want to drain the can!

Next, you are going to add the red beans and you do not want to drain that can either!

This vegan chili recipe is made more flavorful by NOT using stock or broth! It is flavored and gets its liquid from the liquid inside the canned ingredients.

Now, add your chopped onion and green peppers.

Denise doesn’t saute the onions or peppers in advance so that the flavors can meld into the soup. Trust me, don’t saute them and the flavors for the soup are so tasty!

Finally, add in the cumin, chili powder, and any red pepper flakes you may want to add.

Let the vegan chili cook on medium-heat for about 5-10 minutes, just so the flavors can combine.

If you think the vegetarian chili looks too dry, you can add a little bit of water, but this really is a thicker chili recipe!

I don’t recommend adding water, but if you want to, add it 1/4 a cup at a time until your desired consistency is achieved. Make sure to adjust your spices to taste.

And that is it! That is all you have to do to make Denise’s best vegan chili recipe.

Vegetarian Chili Recipe


  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 can black beans, or 1 1/2 cups cooked
  • 1-2 cans garbanzo beans or beans of choice
  • 3-4 cups vegetable broth, depending on desired thickness
  • 2 14- oz cans fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 3-4 carrots or zucchini, chopped small
  • optional 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn
  • optional hot sauce to taste
  • optional garnishes such as sliced avocado, tortilla chips, etc.


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Published on January 16, 2020

Chocolate Covered Katie is one of the top 25 food websites in America, and Katie has been featured on The Today Show, CNN, Fox, The Huffington Post, and ABC's 5 O’Clock News. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating dessert every single day.

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Not every meal needs to have meat in it, and chilli is a perfect meal to have without meat. With so many things going on in each bite, you will forget that it’s vegetarian!


Vegetarian Chilli Ingredients:

2 T. canola oil for frying

2 T. butter (use margarine for vegan chilli)

1 large onion chopped

4 banger-style vegan or vegetarian sausages cut into 1-inch pieces

3 stalks celery cut into bite-sized chunks

1 med. red or yellow pepper cut into bite-sized chunks (optional)

1 can stewed tomatoes

2 tsp. pure maple syrup

¼ cup grated white cheddar or parmesan cheese for topping

½ cup fresh cilantro leaves chopped roughly

1 tsp. smoked paprika

1 organic veggie bouillon cube

Salt & cayenne pepper to taste


Vegetarian Chilli Instructions:

In this easy recipe, we are using some canned ingredients, otherwise it would not be an easy recipe.

• Fry up the onions, peppers & celery in the oil in a pot over medium heat.

• Once onions begin to caramelize, add the stock and sausages, stirring to ensure the sausages don’t stick. Add butter or margarine if more oil is needed.

• When mixture has been brought to a gentle boil, add the canned beans & tomatoes (you can drain the beans fully or partially).

• Stir the chilli well then add bouillon and spices. Stir to blend flavours then reduce heat and allow to simmer.

• Cook stirring occasionally to prevent sticking to bottom of pot until liquid has been reduced. Taste and adjust flavourings accordingly.

• Serve hot chilli with grated cheese or chopped cilantro.

Note: grated carrots & corn niblets are also nice additions to this chilli.

More Recipes from Art

How to make vegetarian chili

  1. Heat oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 20 minutes, until onions begin to caramelize. Stir occasionally.
  2. Add bell pepper, carrots, celery, serrano chiles and garlic. Raise heat to medium-high and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano, salt and black pepper. Stir to combine and cook for 1 minute.
  4. Add hot sauce, diced tomatoes, vegetable broth and beans. Stir together and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes to an hour, uncovered. The longer it simmers, the thicker it will get.
  5. Mix in fresh lime juice before serving, taste and season with more salt if necessary.

Chili is one of those foods that gets better the next day, which makes it perfect for meal prepping. I like using glass containers like these to portion out servings to eat throughout the week, but don’t forget to pack all your favorite chili toppings! Here are some of the best things to mix into your bowl.

How to make the best vegetarian chili in the world – Tips & Tricks

1. Which ingredients can be changed in this easy vegan chili recipe?

You can use any kind of mushroom you like.

While I like to shred them with a fork (see the recipe video for how to shred oyster mushrooms), you don’t need to for this easy vegan chili recipe. I like shredding them because they mimic pulled pork, making the mushrooms a tasty substitution for meat in this vegan dish.

You can also flavor the vegan mushroom chili with any of your favorite seasonings. I think it would be great with diced chipotle in adobo *, ground coriander, or taco seasoning. If you like extra spicy chili, add crushed red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper.

You can easily substitute black beans with any type of beans you have on hand, including red kidney, black-eyed peas, or cannellini. Just be sure to drain and rinse them well.

Even meat-lovers can enjoy this vegetarian chili recipe. You can replace the mushrooms with:

  • Shredded poached chicken. Or diced leftover chicken works great too.
  • Shredded or leftover turkey.
  • Pulled pork
  • Pulled beef (salted and marinated beef would go well).

2. What to serve with vegan mushroom chili

This is the best vegetarian chili in the world if you ask me. So pair it with equally tasty side dishes. A classic way to serve chili is, of course, with a generous slice of crusty bread. Or, lighten things up with a simple green or chopped salad .

You can also serve your homemade chili alongside a zesty mango avocado salsa , quinoa tabbouleh salad , or vegan chopped salad with quinoa .

3. How to make the best vegan chili in a slow cooker (Crockpot)

It’s easy to make this a crockpot recipe. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven * or large heavy pot over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the mushrooms, onion, and carrots. Sauté, stirring often, until the veggies begin to soften, for about 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute more.
  4. Add the sautéed veggies to a 3-quart slow cooker. Stir in the remaining ingredients.
  5. Cover and cook on HIGH for 2.5-3 hours or on LOW for 5-6 hours.

Come back to fragrant and piping-hot chili that’s full of deep and comforting flavors.

4. How to make the best vegetarian chili in an Instant Pot

If you have an Instant Pot * or electric pressure cooker, why not use it to make this easy vegan chili recipe even faster? Here’s how:

  1. Press the Instant Pot’s Sauté function. Once heated, add the oil, onion, and carrots. Sauté, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the mushrooms and garlic and continue to sauté for a few minutes more, until they begin to shrink and release their liquid.
  3. Stir in the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and beans.
  4. Pour in 1 cup of water, mix to combine, then seal the lid on.
  5. Select the MANUAL/PRESSURE COOK button and set the cooking time to 10 minutes.
  6. When the cook time ends and the Instant Pot beeps, manually release the pressure by turning the valve to VENT.
  7. Carefully remove the lid, then season the chili with sea salt and ground pepper, to taste.

There you have it: the best vegan chili recipe done in less than 20 minutes!

That’s all I have for you today, dear Foodies. Enjoy your warming bowls of hearty vegan mushroom chili.

And if you make this or any of my recipes from Blondelish or my new book, I Heart Cheese , be sure to snap a pic and tag me on Instagram @theblondelish! I can’t wait to see your creations.

For more recipe videos like this easy vegan mushroom chili, be sure to Subscribe to my YouTube Channel .